Council Meeting: September 8, 2015

Council Meeting: September 8, 2015

With the Long Weekend, this week’s St. Albert City Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 8th beginning at 2PM. Here’s a look at what is on the agenda for this week:

2016-2018 Municipal Preliminary Budget Position Discussion: This year’s budget will be presented to Council on October 26, 2015. This item brings a preliminary look at what will be presented. Administration is planning to bring forward a budget with a proposed 1.8% tax increase.

2016 Utilities Preliminary Budget Position Discussion: The preliminary estimated increase to the Utility Rate is 0.7% or roughly $1.10/month increase for the average home. After last year’s large jump, these smaller increases should become the norm as our Utility Model is now fully funded and the shortfall in the 10-Year Utility Capital Plan no longer exists.

Master Rates Bylaws for Fees Charges and Fines: As part of the Budget process, Administration is bringing forward the proposed fees, charges and fines for the coming year. The majority of fees appear to be unchanged for the coming year.

Action Plan to Support Green Tape Initiative: In response to the Cultivating Green Tape report presented to Council on March 2, 2015, this report brings back an Action Plan to outline how Planning and Development will support the recommendations of the report. The report includes recommendations on streamlining and improving the process on items such as application packages, customer response times, land use bylaw amendments and engineering drawings.

Heritage Preservation/Development Briefing: This report is intended to provide Council with an overview on the Heritage Development initiatives that are in place, underway or in the works. The presentation will cover off the five primary Heritage focuses which include: The Heritage Park (Grain Elevator Park), Founders Walk, Heritage Buildings, Other Heritage Assets, and Private Heritage Properties.

Procedural & Policy Changes – Public Hearing Information: Last year I brought forward a motion requesting that procedural and policy changes be made to ensure that the public had better access to the information being provided as part of our Public Hearing processes. Staff have now brought forward a recommended set of changes in response to the motion. The proposed changes would add about three weeks to the overall time from submission to public hearing. These changes would mean that the public and Council would have just over three weeks to review all of the materials related to a public hearing as opposed to the current procedure in which the public has two days to review and Council receives the information three or four days ahead of the hearing.

Community Groups Service Delivery Capacity Support, Council’s Goals/Priorities Status Report: The purpose of this report is to provide Council with a progress update on Council’s 2014 priority, “Support the capacity for service delivery by community groups”. This priority falls under City Council’s goal to “Foster a sense of community and connectedness”.

Proposal for Legacy Initiative for RCMP Constable Wynn: The purpose of this report is to bring forward to Council a proposed process for the determination of legacy initiative in honour of RCMP Constable Wynn. The proposed process outline consists of 4 distinct steps which include:

  1. Formation of Planning Committee with the mandate to develop the “program” for the legacy initiative.
  2. The cost estimating the proposed legacy initiative program.
  3. The Fund Development Campaign to support the proposed legacy initiative program.
  4. The execution of the proposed legacy initiative program.

Council Policy C-CS-14, FCSS Operating Grant Program: The purpose of this report is for Council, through Policy C-CS-14 FCSS Operating Grant Program, to have Governance direction for the Family and Community Support Services Operating Grant(s). While the City has for decades provided FCSS operating grants to local organizations, there is currently no policy that provides a governance framework or guidelines around distribution of these funds. The proposed policy will provide governance regarding the process and criteria for approval of FCSS Operating Grants.

Bylaw 27/2015, South Riel Area Structure Plan (3rd reading): This report brings the proposed South Riel Area Structure Plan Bylaw back to Council for consideration of third reading.

Council Motions:

Ministerial Carol Sing: Mayor Crouse has provided the following notice of motion: “The annual Ministerial Carol Sing event be awarded $1,250 for each year of 2015 and 2016.”

That’s all for this week. As always, please don’t hesitate to ask any questions or share your thoughts on this week’s agenda, or any other issue for that matter.

Photo: This week’s photo is a shot that I took earlier this week while out walking the dog at Big Lake. I believe it is either a greater or lesser yellowlegs. There are a lot of interesting birds out at Big Lake right now as the annual fall migration appears to be underway. Check it out if you get a chance! 

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